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Bank of America Takes the Lead in EMV Chip Implementation

This past October, Bank of America (BofA) took the lead on issuing Europay-MasterCard-Visa (EMV) chip enabled cards. This makes Bank of America, the first major banking institution to take this step. As cards expire, new cards with the EMV chip will be sent to bank customers. This is an attempt by Bank of America to get ahead of the mandatory deadline that requires all card distributors and merchants to supply and accept EMV chip cards by October 2015.

Europe and many other western countries have been utilizing EMV for years, but the United States has always lagged behind, but the high profile data breaches suffered by major U.S. retailers like Target and Home Depot, has prompted the U.S. credit and debit card industry to leave magnetic strip technology and adopt EMV technology.

Spokespeople for BofA state that it’s important to get a jump on customer conversion, because of the sheer size of the bank. The BofA customers spent $69.5 billion in the second quarter alone. Earlier this year, American card distributors could not agree on how EMV transactions would be processed. Now all the networks have come to a consensus and will be working to ensure that all newly distributed cards meet the requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act’s Durbin Amendment. Under this act, a debit card must have at least two networks for transaction routing.

BofA says it has been distributing EMV enabled debit and credit cards since 2012, to ensure that its customers are protected. BofA officials believe that once the deadline hits, fraudulent activity will naturally migrate to consumers who do not have the advanced protection of EMV enabled cards.

Is your business ready to process EMV chip cards? If not, your business will be liable if your customer’s credit or debit cards are compromised. Contact the EMV payment processing experts at to learn more about your merchant account setup and maintenance options before the October deadline.